Nectar of the Gods 3L 2016
Released: April 2019
Dark berry, plum, vanilla and leather.
Cassis, blackberry and wild sage.
Prime rib, lamb or mushroom dishes.
The 2016 growing season jumped off to a fast start and it was all the vineyard team could do to keep up with the rapidly growing vines. Thankfully, the season steadied with a cooler than usual July which allowed for a longer hang time on the grapes to allow the flavours to develop while maintaining natural acidity in the fruit. The Petit Verdot was harvested from the Iqbal Vineyard (33%) in Oliver as well as the Ashe Vineyard (16%) in Osoyoos. The Cabernet Sauvignon portion of the blend (40%) was grown on our estate vineyard on the Skaha Bench, and the Cot noir was also grown on the Ashe Vineyard (11%).
The Cot Noir was the first portion of the blend to be harvested on October 4th, followed by the Petit Verdot from Iqbal and Ashe vineyards on November 4th, with the Cabernet Sauvignon from our estate vineyard coming off last on November 10th. Each vineyard block was hand harvested at its optimal balance of sugar, acidity and phenolic ripeness before being brought into the winery where the fruit was destemmed, with a portion of the fruit being foot trodden in bins, before being transferred to tanks for a 5 to 7-day cold soak before the fermentations kicked off. Once fermentation was in full swing the pumpovers were increased to 3 to 4 times daily, depending upon the needs of each individual fermentations.
The length of post-fermentation maceration varied from tank to tank and was determined through tasting multiple times a day to find the peak evolution in mouthfeel and tannin integration while minimizing any bitterness and harsh astringency. Once this peak was hit, the cellar crew was ready to drain tanks immediately. After 18 days on skins the Cot Noir was drained and pressed directly to barrel for malolactic fermentation, followed by the Petit Verdot at 21 days and the Cabernet Sauvignon at 29 days. After three months in barrel, we tasted through several options over multiple days before arriving at the final blend for the 2016 Nectar of the Gods. The wines were racked to tank for blending and put back to barrel for another 17 months before being racked to tank in preparation for bottling unfined and unfiltered.